library cardsAdults need a valid photo ID and proof of current mailing address.  Children must be at least 5 years old to get a library card. Children (ages 12 and younger) applying for a library card should be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

You need a current photo ID with current address OR two forms of identification which together show a current photo and current address. Frequently used types of identification include current driver's license, sheriff's identification, school ID, automobile registration, bus pass or a piece of mail.

There are 2 ways to get started: 

  1. Stop in the library with the identification mentioned above to obtain your library card.
  2. Start the application process online. Patrons who are at least 13 years old can begin their library card application online. When you register online, you will receive a temporary barcode number that you can use to request materials. Then come into any library and verify your current address with a photo ID to receive your permanent library card. After you have your permanent card you will be able to check out items and use online resources.

Using the Library:

Checking Out Materials

Must have your library card or picture ID to check items out


  • Maximum of 50 items can be on a card at one time
  • Of these 50 items, you are allowed a maximum of 2 Lucky Day books, 10 DVDs (including 1 Fast Flick), 10 music CDs and 2 Playaway Views
  • eBooks & Digital Downloads:
  • Reference materials and newspapers do not circulate.

Loaning Periods

  • Books, audiobooks, music and magazines are loanable for 3 weeks
    • Lucky Day books are loanable for 1 week with 1 automatic renewal
  • DVDs/Blu-rays are loanable for 1 week
    • Fast flicks are loanable for 3 days with 1 optional renewal
    • TV series seasons are loanable for 3 weeks
  • Automatic Renewals - All OFL items are allowed 2 automatic renewals - These renewals are granted 3 days before the item is due and the renewal will only go through if the item has not been requested by another patron. You can check the item renewal status through your account or by calling the library.
    *If you would like to receive email notifications about renewal due dates please ask a library staff member.

    PLEASE NOTE: If you are borrowing an item from another library in Onondaga County, it may not have automatic renewals. Please contact the owning library to inquire about automatic renewals.

Placing Holds

You can request items to be reserved for you

  • When placing a hold, you have the option of which library you would like to pick it up.
  • Once your request has come in and you are notified via email, phone or mobile text, you will have 7 days to pick up the item
  • You are allowed up to 50 hold requests at one time
  • Interlibrary Loan (ILL): If what you want is not available within the OCPL system, contact the library to put in a request for an ILL. Click here for more information about requesting ILLs.

Returning Materials

  • Items can be returned to any other Onondaga County Public Library
    • Lucky Day books and Fast Flicks must be returned to OFL
    • Playaway Views must be returned to OFL’s front desk

Fine Policy

  • Fines must be under $10 to check out materials from OFL
  • 25¢ per day for adult items - max $10
  • 10¢ per day for children’s and teen items - max $5
  • Grace Day: When you return items to OFL, you get 1 grace day
  • Paying Fines:
    • You can pay fines at any Onondaga County Public Library – OFL accepts cash or checks payable to Onondaga Free Library
    • If you have fines of $3 or more, you can pay online by logging into your account using a credit card or Paypal.
  • Fine Waivers:
    • One-time half fine waiver at the discretion of the library director – only overdue fines
    • Veterans are eligible for a one-time waiver of overdue fees (up to $10). Need to show proof of status.

Note: Circulation and fine policies vary among OCPL. Check your receipt for due dates.